Bears Wide Receiver Brandon Marshall drops a crucial potential touchdown pass in Green Bay.
Misery definitely loves company. These Minnesota fans I live with are definitely relishing this recent Chicago Bears loss to the Green Bay Packers, even though they claim to hate the Packers so much. They know their inevitable loss to the rookie Andrew Luck and the rebuilding Indianapolis Colts is looming, and they couldn’t bear to deal with the Bears starting off the season 2-0, and having to deal with an obnoxious fan such as myself rubbing it in their face. Touché, Mr. Vikings fan, touché.
Now to the business at hand.
Contrary to popular belief: the sky is not falling in Chicago. At least not just yet. I know, I know. I boasted this shiny, new, prolific Bears offense. Cutler to Marshall was supposed to be epic last night. Michael Bush and Alshon Jeffery were supposed to make huge impacts last night. Believe me, I know. The Bears completely wet the bed offensively, and to be quite honest, totally embarrassed themselves and die hard fans such as myself who have been driving their offensive bandwagon. Shame on me? Nope. No shame here.
There are a few things that I took away from last night’s game. Number one, the great Packers offense only scored one more point against the Bears than they did against the best-in-the-league, "Red Brick Wall" San Francisco 49ers defense. The Packers offense only scored 17 points against the Bears defense, with seven of their points being scored on a gimmick play, a fake field goal. Congratulations, Green Bay, you can put that trick back in your hat, because it’ll never work on any other team this season.
Number two, the offensive line is far from being fixed. Not even close. The Bears brought in free agent running back Michael Bush to do what Matt Forte hasn’t proven he can do: score short yardage touchdowns, but they paid him a boatload of money and continued to neglect their most pressing need, their offensive line. J’Marcus Webb is a turnstile, a complete liability on that offensive line. A friend said this morning that he could sack Cutler in his flip flops going against Webb, and I couldn’t disagree with him. Gabe Carimi is a hothead who drew a needless personal foul penalty killing a promising second-quarter drive. Even though A.J. Hawk pushed first, they always flag the retaliator, and he should know better.
Number three, the Bears got completely outclassed and outcoached by the Packers last night. What did Lovie and the coaching staff say to them at halftime? There seemed to be zero adjustments. San Francisco beat the Packers last week by running the ball down their throats, and the Bears seemed to completely abandon the running game, even though they have two very capable running backs, and even after Forte sprained his ankle, Michael Bush still didn’t get any runs called his way. The passing game didn’t work out for the Bears, and they had no faith in their running game. Brandon Marshall will not have too many games like he did last night, and he’ll catch those passes he dropped the next time around.
The most important thing I took away from last night’s game is that there was nothing that happened last night that was not fixable. If J’Marcus Webb can’t block, they need to find someone else who can. Period. That’s fixed. The defense, like we’re all used to, kept the Bears in the game and made sure it didn’t get out of hand. We all know that Dave Toub is fuming about allowing that fake field goal touchdown and we know that the special teams won’t give up anything else like that again. It might almost be a blessing in disguise that the field goal unit was exposed on that play. Now they’re on their toes. Now that’s fixed. The Bears found out that abandoning the running game is a recipe for disaster and that they can’t chuck the ball 50 times and expect to win the game. Commit to the run more, and that’s fixed.
The most ironic thing I took away from last night’s game is the love/hate relationship that the Chicago media and fans seem to need to have with their starting quarterback. The Bears beat up on the hapless Colts last week, and everyone was singing the praises of Cutler and the new-look Bears offense. Oh, how a week changes things. The Bears have an off night, and once again the torches and pitchforks are out, and the lynch mob wants blood, and now they want Cutler’s blood. Get a grip, calm down, and take a chill pill, Chicago. The Bears will live to fight another day, and there is no better way to get over a bad game like last night’s than hosting the horrible Rams at Soldier Field next Sunday.
We still have a quarterback, Chicago. And the sky is not falling.